Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Creating More Pages for Your Site
Web Page Design
Word to the Wise
10 Tips for a Better Web Page
When you’re designing your own website, think about
your own experiences surfing the Web. Which sites made
you want to stay and look around? Which couldn’t you
leave fast enough? Thinking like a visitor will help you
design web pages that are interesting and user-friendly.
These tips will help, too:
• Keep it legible. Don’t use an image for your web
page’s background; it makes the text much harder to
read. Along the same lines, dark backgrounds and
lowcontrast font colors leave visitors squinting—and they
won’t hang around long if they can’t make out the text.
• Don’t make your pages too long—or too short.
Many visitors look only at the first screen of text,
never bothering to scroll down the page. If you’ve got
a lot of information, break it up into several pages.
But don’t go to the other extreme, either. If visitors
have to click through to a new page every couple of
sentences, they might lose interest and go elsewhere.
• Don’t clutter up the page. Make your pages inviting.
Most visitors skim web pages, for example, rather than
reading them carefully, so avoid big blocks of tightly
packed words. And instead of putting up a dozen
photos of your new puppy, pick the best shot or two.
• Avoid flashing, blinking graphics. Animated
GIFs—those images that bounce and jump around—
are distracting and, to many people, annoying. Word
has some cute animated clip art, but think twice
before setting it loose on your web page.
• Test links. Links that don’t work are frustrating to
visitors and make your site seem out of date and
poorly maintained. When you put your page on the
Web, test any links to make sure they work. That goes
for both internal links (those that jump to other pages
within your site) and external links (those that open
web pages outside your site).
• Compress graphics. Large images can take a long
time to load, even when the viewer has a fast
connection—and web surfers aren’t known for their patience.
To compress a picture in Word, select the image and
click the Picture Tools | Format tab’s Compress
Pictures button (Alt, JP, M). In the Compress Pictures
dialog box, choose Screen (150 ppi) to optimize the
picture for web viewing.
• Clean up your spelling and grammar. This is just
plain common sense whenever you share your
writing. Use Word’s proofreading tools (see Chapter 4) to
make your text as error-free as possible.
• Make it easy for visitors to contact you. Put a
Contact Me link in your pages’ footer. Create the
footer (page 211), type Contact Me , and then insert
a hyperlink to your email address: Select Contact Me
and click Insert➝Hyperlink (Alt, N, I). In the Insert
Hyperlink box (Figure 8-7), choose E-mail Address,
and then type your address in the address box. Click
OK to insert the link.
• Go beyond Word. Word is fine for creating basic
pages. But if you’re going to be building a large site,
consider using alternatives designed specifically for
designing web pages. Many website hosts offer
easyto-use web page editors as part of their service. Or
consider buying dedicated software such as Adobe
Dreamweaver or Microsoft Expression Web. And it
never hurts to buy a good reference book, such as
Creating a Web Site: The Missing Manual .
Tip: If you use your website host’s HTML editor to work with your site’s pages, here’s a great shortcut for
generating clean HTML directly from a Word document. Point your web browser to http://word2cleanhtml.
com . Copy the Word document, and then paste it into the site’s big text box. Click the “convert to clean
html” button. Copy the results and paste them into your HTML editor.